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1«,                                           VERDICT   OX IXDIA
A thousand sparkles, till it looks like a gigantic Christmas tree ?
But the associations of the word %Christmas' reminds us that there
is still one faith which we have not considered.
Mifcht this "Indian5 for whom we are seeking be a Christian?
Might there be something in the supreme teaching of Jesus which
caused him to forget these fratricidal hatreds, and to regard him-
>elf as a member of one of God's great families, the Indian family ?
We can best answer this question by telling a story.
NOT long ago I was sitting in a little Indian restaurant in Madras
waiting for & friend who was going to show me photographs of
some old churches which he had taken in Goa. Goa is Portuguese
terruorv. and it is very rich in churches of late eighteenth-century
buroqiie. They are frail and fading now, their jewels have long
bee:: stolen, and two centuries of Indian suns have bleached the
la,st fteck> of colour from their elegant facades; they stand like
ghosts on the sea-shore, their windows staring homewards. But
though they wilt and crumble they are still thronged with wor-
shippers,—Indian converts of long ago who have kept to their old
iuith.
My friend arrived.   His head was bandaged.
'Hullo !    Where d'you get that crack ?
He grinned.    "In the best of places.    In church.1
*In Church?'
He explained. He had been to mass. When the sacred wiue
was being offered a Christian Hindu noticed that the cup had
been handed to a woman of a Jower caste than his. He got up
urul tried to snatch it from here. The woman screamed, the other
members of her caste gathered round to protect her, sides were
taken, and within a few seconds an unholy row was in progress,
with the struggling bodies of Indians reeling backwards and
forwards over a pavement stained with blood and wine.
* You look shocked," >>aid my friend.
* Well, it isn't a very pretty story/
"Oh—but it happens all over India, in every Christian church.
Why, down here in the south, the fights were so fierce that they've
stopped processions down the aisle. People used to tear the
banners out of each other\ hands. It's worst during Holy Com-
munion. We've had to put up little brass enclosures for the